5 Ways of Finding Biblical Answers to Your Questions Online For Free

eisudl8

What is the Trinity? Is Jesus God? What is God’s will to my life? Does water baptism essential to salvation? How do I reconcile God’s love with His justice? What does the Bible say about suicide?

These are some of the questions that puzzles people and as Christians needs to answers. So here’s a list of five resources where you can find biblical answers to those inquiries.

Just a disclaimer though. As much as these online resources provides answers, its better for a Christian to find answers for it first in prayers and searching it through the Scriptures. Also before going online, check it offline by seeking assistance to your pastor or elder.

Ask it in real time – This is a great resource I go to time and time again. Whether if it’s for my personal Bible time or just plain curious, Ask Ligonier is my go to website. With a simple tap to the chat icon, it’s as easy as chatting to a friend on FB Messenger. It’s 24 hours and 6 days a week, Ask Ligonier will help you find answers to your theological or biblical inquiries from their well equipped agents.

Listen to a podcast — With over 1,000 episodes, Ask Pastor John provides answers for theological and biblical questions. They even ask about John Piper’s hand gestures when preaching. Listeners are encourage to send their questions.

Go to Youtube – There are a few ministries channels on Youtube that offers question and answer videos that I would like to share t o you. First stop is Grace to You, which of course is a teaching ministry of John MacArthur. They have this short and full length Q and A sessions you might want to check out. They are so kind to provide a playlist for it for you convenience.

Next is from The Gospel Coalition, which post daily videos on Facebook and Youtube. With their vast author, theologians, preachers and speakers, you’ll find a variety of view point for your questions. They don’t have a specific playlist for it but with a simple digging you’ll find something worthwhile.

Lastly, a channel that you’ll find answers is Reformed Seminary. Since Youtube can be searched by using a hastag, #WisdomWednesday of Reformed Seminary.

Download a free app – We all know the GotQuestions.org is a go to websites for us looking for biblical response to our inquiries. But did you know it has an app? Yes an app that you can read offline, loaded with tons of question and answers. When it’s installed on your phone or tablet you can take it anywhere. It’s also available in different languages.

Grab a free e-book – Let’s end this post with something from Ligonier Ministries again.  Crucial Questions by R. C. Sproul is a eBook series focusing on important questions in the Christian life. And it’s free forever! Another good news about these booklets, Ligonier Ministries keeps on adding new stuff under this series from time to time. Go to their website and create an account to download these ebooks. If you have a Kindle app, you can get the series over Amazon Kindle Store. Either ways the ebooklets are free!

What websites or apps helped you find answers for those burning questions? Please comment down below.

 

 

8 Favorite Quotes from the Book “Enjoy Your Prayer Life” by Michael Reeves

dk9rbiu

Last Lord’s Day we celebrated Pastor’s Appreciation Month. We let our pastor take a back seat from his usual worship duties and our deacons and lay leaders did their thing which are truly a blessing to the church. Our pastor noted that last Sunday was the first time we had an elaborate program for the celebration and we hope it won’t be the last. Will you pray for our church and our pastor as we honor him and his care for us? Also lift him up to God for his ordination coming next year.

Anyways, here’s some quotes from book by Michael Reeves, Enjoy Your Prayer Life, published by 10 of Those Publishing. If you like these quotes, please get yourself a copy of this book by ordering at 10 of Those.

“…your prayer life reveals how much you really want communion with God and how much you really depend on him.”

“It is the word of God, the gracious message of Christ, that awakens faith and so prayer – and so that must be the basic shape of our everyday communion with God.”

“…prayerlessness is practical atheism, demonstrating a lack of belief in God.”

“Praying is enjoying – and pleading for – the friendship and friendly assistance of God.”

“Prayerlessness always goes hand in hand with a lack of Christian integrity.”

“To know you are a beloved child of God protects you from thinking of prayer as a ladder to God or an exercise by which you work your way into his favour. Prayer doesn’t make you more accepted. Instead, prayer is growing in the appreciation of what you have been given.”

“Prayer is the antithesis of self-dependence.”

“When you default to thinking of prayer as an abstract activity, a ‘thing to do’, the tendency is to focus on the prayer as an activity – which makes it boring. Instead, focus on the one to whom you’re praying.”

4 Theological Words Commonly Misunderstood by Filipinos

jjl9gz4

In Pinoy conversations, when faith becomes the subject, you can see some misunderstandings in the words we use. Considering that the Philippines is a “Christian” country, sometimes words get lost it’s meaning.   This doesn’t mean we are totally illiterate when it comes to the nitty gritty of their faith or about the Bible. Even in Pinoy evangelical circles, who are more exposed to books and biblical teachings, sometimes get confused with these terms. So for the benefit of all of us, we shall unlock the meaning of the following words commonly misunderstood by Filipinos.

Born-Again – As a Filipino, what comes in your mind when you hear the word, born again? For some Pinoys, it usually refers to a charismatic movement that flourished from the 80’s, most specifically the group Jesus Is Lord (or JIL) Movement headed by Bro. Eddie Villanueva. This group, just like any charismatic groups, have TV shows were they preach and heal people. They had their spotlight here and there because some Pinoy celebrities are members of some churches of this group.

We can see the word born again in the Bible and it’s not referring to a charismatic movement. In John 3: 3, we see Jesus talking about it with Nicodemus. Born again in context with this chapter means regeneration, which is sole act of God making someone dead in sin, come alive and ready to receive the gift of faith which is also from God. For someone to be right with God, God need that sinner to be regenerated. This is a crucial aspect of salvation, because if we believe salvation is from God alone, it must regeneration. For more about being born again and regeneration, check out this article from Monergism.

Iglesia or Iglesiya – When Filipinos use this word, they commonly refer it to the church or members of Iglesia ni Cristo founded by Felix Manalo. Although the word is mentioned in Catholic mass referring to the church or you can read it on Tagalog Bible translation, Iglesia became a household name due to the popularity of Iglesia ni Cristo.

However,  Iglesia is a Tagalog translation of the Greek word ekklesia which means called out assembly. Hence, iglesia or ekklesia refers not to a building, a religious group but to a group of people called by God out from this sin fallen world. Whether it’s the universal or local church, iglesia or iglesiya can be used. A believer can also use the word simbahan,which is more popularly used in the Philippines.

Catechism – The next two words that we will tackle are not just misunderstood by Pinoys  but also by many specially in evangelical circles.  In the Pinoy context, catechism is something  associated with the Roman Catholic Church. Catechizing is usually done during  fiestas, where babies will be baptized in a church or chapel. The godparents will undergo a “seminar”, which include teaching basic Roman Catholic doctrines, in a form of catechism before the baptism.

However, catechism is not solely a Roman Catholic thing. Other denomination do have catechism as a teaching tool for the lay people. Using a catechism doesn’t make you Roman Catholic, so you should not dread using one. Catechism is basically a summary of essential doctrines a Christian group believes. It’s written in a question and answer style, for brevity and easy memorization. Throughout the centuries, churches benefited with the use of catechism. Personally, I use the Baptist catechism to teach our church youth group.

catholic – This final entry to our list is similar with entry #3. Christians associate it with the Roman Catholic Church solely, because they can read obviously the word, catholic. But as you can see, I typed it in lower case to make a distinction from the capitalized one. Also the we dropped the word “Roman” from it. When referring to the Catholic church a hierarchic church where the pope is the head, we use the word Roman Catholic.

But what about the small catholic? What does it mean?  It simply means universal highlighting the universality of the church. This means the church is not limited to the local church you can find in your neighborhood, but to all churches all over the planet. The universal or catholic church also refers to the church from different ages or time. So everytime you hear the word catholic in the Apostles’ Creed,it doesn’t refer to the Roman Catholic Church,  it only means the Christian church of all times and of all places.

What other words do you think that are misunderstood by our fellow Filipinos? Please comment down below.

 

 

Book Review “Revolutionary Work” by William Taylor

wunnl7g

If you can’t stop singing “Everything is Awesome” because of the cover that reminds you about the Lego movie, then it’s OK.  Because this book is indeed awesome!

Revolutionary Work tackles on the biblical view of work. This book is based on a series presented at St. Helen’s Bishopsgate by William Taylor. Revolutionary Work shows us the work as God’s gift because of our stewardship role in creation. Therefore, it is essential to us. Also it shows a balanced view of it as all vocations are equal and we should not call one as “special”. Despite of being a gift from our Creator, futility can be seen as we are fallen humans as we toil for ourselves, our family and for God’s mandate. However, work should be done knowing God is our boss and the means for us to bring the gospel to our co-workers.

There are four chapters which are a bit long but you can read their summaries at the end of each chapters, which is cool. If you want to skip all of it and distill the essentials, you should go for the summaries.  However, as much as possible read all of it.  The indexes and the Q and A section are must reads also, so don’t put this book down yet.

I love how Taylor’s treatment of  John 4 on the work of God which is the end goal of all our work. The work of God meaning evangelism. That’s on chapter four, which for me is the most engaging part of the book.

All in all Revolutionary Work, though it’s a slim volume, delivers a meaty content that you can find in a thick book. So this is my third time to give 10 of Those and this book a two thumbs up! Now sing some more “Everything is Awesome”

My verdict:

5 out of 5

8 Favorite Quotes from the Book “Revolutionary Work” by William Taylor

otmhk1c

By God’s providence, my phone’s down time helped me to slow down and gave me this mini digital sabbath here and there. It allowed me to focus more on what matters. I still get to write for my blog but in a slower phase (and a slow laptop). I get to join a FB group that is very active in prayers so I grab the opportunity every time I open my FB and there is an update from that group, I’ll stop and pray for these brethren who covets my prayers. Its was a blessing to me.

Anyways, here’s some quotes from book by William Taylor, Revolutionary Work published by 10 of Those Publishing. If you like these quotes, please get yourself a copy of this book by ordering at 10 of Those.

“Work is good and work is grim, but work should be governed by the gospel. Therefore, you need to be thinking how you can be of greater service to the gospel in your particular position.”

 “So how does God do his work? It is through his word. He brings people in to the harvest through his word; he keeps people to the end of the harvest through his word; and he brings people to himself and builds people up and sustains them as harvesters through his word. This is how his work is done.”

“…the God of the Bible is a worker: he made the universe. Unlike the pantheon of Greek gods or Eastern deities, he gets his hands dirty, as it were. God himself dignifies work. Since God made man in his image, we find that we are workers too.”

“God is the ruler and God is a worker but humanity is to rule and work under him. This is a delegated task, given to us by God, and therefore we are answerable to God for the manner in which we undertake it. We are to rule over the world and care for it in an accountable and responsible way. We are to develop it and to design within it, but must not forget that it has been given to us on trust.”

“Realising that all jobs are dignified should have a profound impact on how we view ourselves and the position in which God has placed us, and indeed it will influence what kind of work we are prepared to do for the sake of the gospel. All roles are of equal value.”

“All work is delegated to us by God and designed by God for our human good and for his glory. Therefore, no area of work is somehow of higher value or more important or more significant than another.”

“Our contemporaries are ignorant of the way God’s world works. They have only their own dreams to guide them. They do not have a word from outside explaining the universe. Yet in the Bible God speaks to us and makes clear the correct way we should perceive work.”

“Many companies issue business cards or uniforms that make clear to others that their employees work for their company. Every Christian’s emblem should be, ‘I work for Jesus’. He is our ultimate master; throughout our entire working week we serve him.”

Cultivating A Passion for God Through Reading

f3plhee

We had our laymen and women fellowship last August 17 which we focus on the theme Passion for God. The whole day affair was a blessing to us as we share the preaching and fellowship within our sector.

In the afternoon session, we had an open forum. We were grouped into four then we discuss questions pertaining on how we can develop a passion for God. Each group presented their answers in front of everyone. The afternoon was well spend with insightful and engaging discussions.

As much as the thought exchange went well, I feel that I have to share something since we are nearing at the end of this quarter fellowship. The open forum did miss out some questions our speaker provided. And something that is near to my heart was not raised out. So I ask our chairman if I can speak to answer a specific question. The question is about reading and resources that read to ignite our passion for God. So I gave brief talk probably 5 minutes about nurturing a passion driven reading habit. I wish I could have spoken for couple more minutes but I don’t have much time. But if they did allowed me to elaborate further, my response might be like the one below.

Cultivating a Passion for God Though Reading

In response to one of the questions our speaker gave us which is dear to my heart, I would like to share 3 things that could help in the pursue of God through the habit of reading.

It depends on what is accessible to us.

We might blame the internet for the collapse of the record store industry or an impending doom over physical book shops however the internet made something unthinkable. We can access music and literature online free. What can take days or weeks to access is now just on click away. The internet, though slay the physical stores, it offers something revolutionary in digital proportions!

It might be a happy ending then for us who hunger books and music then again what happen?

Just when the internet makes classical music accessible, what did we do?

Just when the internet makes poetry accesible, what did we do?

Just when the internet makes some Christian books accessible what did we do? We turn to social media. Messaging boards and chat rooms were the precursor of the social media today. We consumed them then moved on to Facebook and Twitter.

So how can we built a passion for God through our reading materials when we dont access the good stuff? How do we create good habits when we don’t avail those vast resources in the internet? How can we contribute our reading habits? Make the internet work for you. You have no excuse because of the bulk of materials that are few click away are at your disposal.

It depends on how we view reading.

In the Philippine context, we are not a reading culture. This doesn’t mean we dont read or we are illiterate, it just mean that reading is not in our blood. Reading here is a sub culture.  If I will look back on my childhood days, I can see all the magazines and comics I enjoyed.  I think this is the golden age of reading (late 70’s to mid-90’s) because we buy newspapers and when we go to our neighbor, we devour magazines, comics, songhits and pocketbooks to our hearts desire. Publishing houses are dishing out reading materials here and there. Booksales (the popular second bookstore) are everywhere. Those where the days as they say. Then the internet came and almost obliterate the publishing industry in the Philippines. It also took toll on how we value reading. Suddenly we became too lazy to read.

Then there’s was the emergent of Wattpad that gave us teens and young adults that read books (and also writes). For me that resurgence really made a mark and push people to read. Book fairs and comic conventions are booming is another factor to take note. But thats not enough.

Pinoy Christians should view reading as a discipline, a skill that we need to be learned and to focus on. Again, it’s not in our blood to be readers and it will take a time and effort to put it in our system to be a good reader, nevertheless it’s attainable. We can create a good habit of reading that will be beneficial to us. Reading that is not just for entertainment, but a more of empowering ourselves to pursuit a passion for God.

Social media, with all of it’s benefits to us wouldnt help us achieve that focus. We allow Facebook updates and Tweets to distract us for doing what matters most. It’s an instant gratification because it magnifies our narcissism. Maybe it’s time to lay down our phones and get something to read that in the long run will benefit us and the church.

It depends on what we are willing to let go.

Purposeful reading does have competitors. One of those rivals is Facebook. Rather that occupy ourselves with books that will glorify God we substitute it with something that will glorify ourselves. Not that Facebook is evil in itself but how it robs and distracts us of our time to allocate it to things that matter. Having said that, as believers are ready to give it up for the sake of reading for the Kingdom?

Another one is the TV shows that is a staple to our Pinoy culture. Phenomenal shows like Ang Probinsyano, The General’s Daughter and tons of K-Drama will keep us occupied the whole night. Are we willing to cultivate beneficial reading over Ricardo Dalisay?

We only got 24 hours everyday and sleeping already had a chunck of it. So how do we spead our time? Sacrificing distraction for something beneficial should be our priority.

In the church setting, it’s the responsibility of the pastor to teach his members to be good readers. How do the pastor do it? Recommend good books by mentioning it to the pulpit. Quote some of it on your sermons. Set up book reading clubs. Give books as gifts to special occassions to you members. Deliberately point out the negative effects of social media. Suggest time management. And on and on we can go with all of this. The point is, reading with the endgame of knowing God more matters even in our reading habit. May God bless us all as we take steps to attain this noble pursuit.

8 Favorite Quotes From the Book “Fearless Faith” by Jonathan Stephen

vsw2hbz

Our 27th year church anniversary was a blast last Sunday. It was by God’s grace successful. The special numbers, the fellowship and most importantly the preaching of the Word was edifying. Not only that, the Lord added 3 new members in His church during the afternoon baptism. Will you keep us in prayer as our church grows and spread the gospel in our community?

Anyways, here’s a book by Jonathan Stephen, Fearless Faith published by 10 of Those Publishing. This book is part of the series of books from Union Theology and with Michael Reeves as senior editor. If you like these quotes, please get yourself a copy of this book by ordering at 10 of Those.

“What we ultimately trust in, where our hope really lies and what we love most of all not only reveal our true selves but also determine the direction of our lives.”

“faith, hope and love as the three huge propellers that drive the church of Jesus (and you as a member of that church) safely through the perilous seas of life.”

“The truth is that fear cannot coexist peacefully alongside faith, hope or love. There is a constant battle between them until one or other takes control.”

“the antidote to great fear is a strong faith in the true Person of Christ.”

” If our lives were always pleasant and never challenging, our faith would scarcely be required and never grow. We would not be much use to the Lord in this life, nor would we be prepared for the life to come.”

“A Christian’s trials and troubles are a normal and necessary part of our training for glory. So let’s be thankful that our times are in the Lord’s hands, and not in our own (Ps. 31:15).”

“Let your experience of God’s goodness in the past feed your faith in his loving purposes for you now. While there is no promise that we shall be delivered from all our trials and troubles, by faith we shall pass safely through them. “

“Ultimately, nothing strengthens the believer’s faith more than a full realisation and understanding of the Saviour’s unique identity.”

Book Review: Richard Dawkins, C. S. Lewis and the Meaning of Life by Alister McGrath

1d7atp2

In Richard Dawkins, C. S. Lewis and the Meaning of Life,  McGrath brings out the two of the greatest thinkers of our time on the table and (objectively) scrutinize their beliefs focusing only on the meaning of life.  I love how McGarth presents these extraordinary gentlemen in this book. Both Oxford fellows (including the author), both had a landmark book and both experienced atheism and Christianity. This adds the level of thrill in diving in to this brief book. And I have to say, I got really hooked.

Richard Dawkins, C. S. Lewis and the Meaning of Life is not the usual apologetics book. It’s a short and accessible book for atheist, Christians or anyone who both wants to know Dawkins and Lewis in one sitting. It’s serves as a springboard for other bodies of work these two intellectual giants have dished out (or to books of McGarth on the topics). There are lots of superb books that have great treatment with these gentlemen but if you want a starting point, this is the book for you.

By reading this book, I think you have gotten to the core or the most important part of any book that discuss these authors and their view of life. Peak inside the minds of these brilliant thinkers and how their views influence the world.  Pick up this book and you’ll surely love it!

My verdict:

5 out of 5

(InterVarsity Press provided the digital copy for this review)

The Freebie Round-Up # 52

j7hqslb

Controversy spilled over a transgender woman who was not allowed by a janitress to enter a women’s bathroom. So news outlets picked it up and its all over media. Then the SOGIE Bill is on the spotlight again. Please pray for the us Christians who stands against this bill that will trample our religious and academic freedom.

Anyways, here’s a list of great freebies that are waiting to be downloaded. And if your new here to this post or you missed out other freebie round-ups, check the links to those post at the end of this article.

0omtca2

Free audio teachings on “The Book of Romans” by C Michael Patton- Credo Courses is giving this digital audio download of this teaching for free. Make sure you have an account with Credo Courses (which is also free).

h3m4sih

FREE sample of “Contemplate” Bible Magazine- Get a free sample digital copy of Contemplate, the Holy Bible in magazine format with beautiful photographs.

FREE e-book “Sermons Upon the Eight Chapter of Romans” by Thomas Manton- Monergism has this superb streak of giving out free e-books this past weeks. So I have to pick out only one for this weeks freebie post.

xcmxluu

FREE live stream of Sing 2019 with free 20 songs download-  Dont miss this conference with awesome line up of speakers by signing up this live stream notification. Once signed up, you’ll receive 20 songs free.

FREE audiobook of  “Spending Ourselves in Christ” – As a “thank you’ for supporting Grange Press, they’re making their new audiobook for free download. To support this small press, please sign up with their email list.

FREE e-book “Love the Least (A Lot)” by Michael Spielman – From the founder of Abort73.com is this free ebook. If you want a physical copy, you have to shell some cash.

FREE e-book “The Wiersbe Bible Study Series: Jeremiah” – On this week’s David C. Cook’s free e-book is the Bible study series of Warren W. Wiersbe titled Jeremiah: Taking A Stand for the Truth. Get it while it’s still free.

By the way, to my Pinoy friends do you want to learn how to self-publish your book? Here’s a step by step video from Loida Bauto an AVM survivor and a PWD vlogger:

Do you want more freebies? Check out these past blog post:

Freebie Round-Up #51

Freebie Round-Up #50

Freebie Round-Up #49

Freebie Round-Up #48

Freebie Round-Up #47

Freebie Round-Up #46

Freebie Round-Up #45

Freebie Round-Up #44

Freebie Round-Up #43

Freebie Round-Up #42

Freebie Round-Up #41

Freebie Round-Up #40

8 Favorite Quotes From the Book “Abide” by Warren W. Wiersbe

6evkyse

Our church anniversary is on Sunday and other than the New Year or Christmas, this is a good time to reflect the goodness of God to my family through the blessings he extend to the church. Through preaching, teaching and fellowships the church had served us and in return we served the church with our God given possessions and talents. We hope and pray that God will bless this mutual exchange that extend from this side of heaven to the next life.

Anyways, here’s the book by Warren W. Wiersbe, Abide published by 10 of Those Publishing.  If you like these quotes, please get yourself a copy of this book by ordering at 10 of Those. Stay tuned for more quotes and review of this book.

“The Christian need not have an identity crisis. Jesus tells us who we are and why we are here. We are branches, and he is the Vine. We are here to bear fruit. Once you accept this simple fact, you are on the way to making your life meaningful and useful.”

“If you are growing in holy living, and experiencing victory over temptation, then you are abiding in Christ. The absence of temptation is not a proof of abiding; the presence of temptation and testing is the proof.”

“It is the Holy Spirit who encourages and enables us to abide. He teaches us the Word; He enables us to pray; He reveals our sins; He gives us the inward desire to obey God. “

“God works in, we work out. As we surrender, God works in; as we obey, God works out. Abiding involves keeping in fellowship with the Vine so that God can work in us.”

“The Christian who abides in Christ and shares his life will produce the fruit of holiness. You cannot manufacture holiness. The Pharisees tried to do this and Jesus called them hypocrites.”

“Holiness is nothing else but the beauty and character of God displayed in our everyday lives. Holy living means more than victory over sin; it also means growth in character so that we become more like Jesus Christ.”

“One of the reasons God saved you is that you might bear fruit in this world. You are living in a hungry world where people are starving for spiritual reality.”

“When you yielded to Christ, a living union was formed between you and the Lord. Just as the branch gets its life from the vine, so the believer gets his life from Jesus Christ.”